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Secret Spaces

Chapter Text

20 October 2017
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
near Hogsmeade, Highland, Scotland, UK


Mako wakes in a room which isn't hers, wearing unfamiliar but very soft pajamas.

White drapes surround her bed, soft light, very quiet.

Dull aches as she pushes herself to sitting.

The Hospital Wing.

Because ...?

Hogwarts under attack.

Dragon.

Chuck—

""—you feeling better this morning, Miss Mori? No more itching?""

Mako controls a startle. "Yes, ma'am. The ointment did as you said."

""May I open the curtain, please?""

"Yes, ma'am."

Hooks rattle along their metal track.

Madam Pomfrey, a raceme of cardinal flower pinned to her amber dupatta, flicks her wand at the lamp. "And your arm?"

Her arm ...?

Scrabbling away and no wand but so many teeth—

Mako flexes her elbow, rolls her shoulder. "It feels much better, thank you."

Madam Pomfrey makes a note. "You slept well, then?"

"Yes, ma'am."

Madam Pomfrey hums approval.

""'scuse me?""

Madam Pomfrey attends the door. "Yes, Coach Hansen?"

Mako sits up straight, smooths her blanket.

"Chuck's fine. I, um, wanted to check on Ma—Miss Mori."

Madam Pomfrey turns.

"Thank you, sir. I am doing well."

Coach Hansen twists his wedding ring around his finger. "Actually, Chuck sent me over to ask Miss Mori to visit, if she wants."

Mako looks to Madam Pomfrey.

"If Miss Mori is feeling up to it, there's no problem with a visit."

Coach Hansen's shoulders drop and he smiles weakly. "I'll walk you over, if you'd like."

"Yes, please!" Mako slides out of bed, checks her balance, tucks her feet in the waiting slippers, then links her arm with Coach Hansen's.

They walk past closed doors along the hall to the private room at the end.

Inside: Chuck, cushioned by at least a dozen pillows and skin a sunburned pink where it isn't covered by bandages.

"I ... I'll leave you two to catch up," mumbles Coach Hansen.

"Thank you, sir," says Mako.

Coach Hansen slinks off down the hall.

"May I join you?"

"Fure," says Chuck, offering the chair at his bedside. "'o fo it."

"Thank you." Mako sits, the smell of burn cream thick in the air.

Chuck swallows, digs amid the blankets, then—"TimTam?"

"Thank you." Mako accepts a biscuit.

Chuck smiles—almost doesn't wince—and leans back in his nest, shoves another treat in his mouth.

Mako stifles an eye-roll, but allows herself a small smile. "Where did you get TimTams?" She bites off a corner.

Chuck swallows another too-large mouthful. "Ray sent 'em up from London. 'Thanks for savin' my brother' and all that."

"Yancy will be alright, then?"

"Mhm. Said the Healers at St Mungo's have him nearly good as new already."

"That is wonderful news."

"Yea." Chuck blows out a deep breath. "As far as I know, no one got permanently messed up yesterday." Frowns. "'cept ... you know."

"You didn't have a choice."

"Not really, but." Chuck scratches at the wrappings over his chest, mumbles, "My mum sent some TimTams, too."

Mako tucks a loose strand of hair behind her ear.

"You're okay, right?"

"I'm fine. The burns are already healed thanks to Madam Pomfrey."

"Cool, cool ...." Chuck's gaze wanders to the window.

Mako's follows.

Sunlight pokes through low grey clouds; trees bend in the breeze.

Chuck sighs.

""Inky!""

Mako and Chuck jump.

Something black and low to the ground skitters past the door.

"What was—"

Something plaid and First Year-sized flies by.

""Get back here 'fore I hex yer scaly bum!""

Mako looks to Chuck.

"Katie MacIver and her dragon, I think." He shrugs, then picks at the duvet cover.

Silence stretches like a sleepy cat.

Mako takes a deep breath. "What have you been doing since I saw you last?"

"Uh, not much, really?"

Mako gives him her best 'I don't believe you' look.

Chuck rubs his neck with a bandaged hand. "Okay, well, did I tell you who came to see me off?"